What is, or should be, the core concern of Christians?Below is my answer:
Is it all right if I quote the Scriptures? :-)Thanks, Rmj, for making me think about my faith. To my surprise, answering the question was not difficult, because my response came easily. It was almost as though I was waiting for the question.
He has told you, O mortal, what is good;
and what does the Lord require of you
but to do justice, and to love kindness,
and to walk humbly with your God? (Micah 6:8)
He [Jesus] said to him, “’You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the greatest and first commandment. And a second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.” (Matthew 22: 37-40)
In everything do to others as you would have them do to you; for this is the law and the prophets. (Matthew 7:12)
For me, the only way to begin to live the teachings I quoted is "in Christ". Some days, the only way I get out of bed in the morning is "in Christ" - Christ working in me. For me, that is salvation, which I need every single day.
The passages I quoted are touchstones that work for me, day by day, to keep me focused on being not only a speaker of the words, but also a doer of the words I quoted. Also, I like to keep things simple, for I am a simple person with a simple mind. "In Christ" is where I find strength and courage (salvation), especially in difficult times (literally, on occasion), to put one foot in front of the other to keep going.
Rmj quoted my response at the beginning of another post, along with very kind words. Whoa! And then he asked another question. After thanking him, I left the following comment:
You ask: ...what if, instead of coming into the presence of God for a spiritual recharge or refill, we came into the presence of the living God with fear and trembling? ...the existential awe that creates an awfulness (in the old sense of the world, being filled with awe) at the nature of God, an awe that would put the world in perspective.Those of you who read what I've written may wonder how well I live up to the fine words and ideals and how often I worship God with all my heart. My answer is easy: Not very well, and not as often as I should. Still, I believe I do better living my life "in Christ" - not better than anyone else - but better than I would otherwise.
What if? Might it be with an attitude of the heart like the imagery of the twenty-four elders in the passage from the Book of Revelation (one of my favorites)?
...the twenty-four elders fall before the one who is seated on the throne and worship the one who lives for ever and ever; they cast their crowns before the throne, singing,
‘You are worthy, our Lord and God,
to receive glory and honour and power,
for you created all things,
and by your will they existed and were created.' (Rev. 4:10-11)
Such an attitude of the heart is my ideal in Sunday worship, for it is the acknowledgement that God is God, and I am very much not God, but rather God's creation.
Then you ask: Would that be a religionless Christianity?
I don't know, but I believe such an attitude of the heart has little to do with a person's membership in a particular Christian denomination.
Rmj, thanks again for the nudge to ponder and write a bit about the present state of my faith.
Image from Mouse Runner.